Bee pollen sprung onto my breakfast scene earlier this year when my sister-in-law brought me some back from Spain. Admittedly I had not heard about its ‘superfood’ status before. Since then I have noticed it pop up in some health food shops and cafes in London. This is no surprise as these tiny balls are packed full of goodness and an easy addition to your meals, particularly breakfast.
The Journey from pollen (in flowers) to ‘Bee Pollen’ we eat
The bee visits a flower. She nestles herself in and scrapes off the powdery loose pollen from the stamen with her jaws and front legs. A tiny dab of the honey she brought with her from the hive, moistens the pollen. The enlarged and broadened tarsal segments of her legs have bristles named pollen combs. The bee uses the combs to brush the gold powder from her coat and legs whilst flying to the next flower or home to the hive. She keeps the gathered pollen ‘dust’ in her baskets (small pockets on her legs). When the bee’s baskets are full the pollen ‘dust’ forms a golden grain, or granule. It is then collected from the hive by bee keepers.
Why is it so good for you?
Bee pollen is considered one of nature’s most nourishing foods as it contains almost 100% of nutrients required by humans. Bee-gathered pollens are rich in proteins (approximately 40% protein), free amino acids, vitamins, including B-complex, and folic acid.
Primarily down to its high antioxidants, vitamin and mineral content, benefits have been found to include; enhanced energy, soothing of skin, anti-inflammatory effect on the respiratory system, helps the immune system, great for treating allergies and can support the cardiorespiratory system.
Convinced yet? No? You want to know how it tastes of course.
Sweet and crunchy! It has a honey taste but once you bite into a granule its powdery. The tastiest way I think is with greek yoghurt, nuts, fruit and a drizzle of honey or agave nectar.
Top tip – do not put it in a smoothie unless you are going to drink it straight away. I made this mistake and it turned my smoothie (I think it was that anyway!) almost solid over night in the fridge!
Thats enough talk, go out, get some and try it!